Rafael Nadal raises concern on foot injury in preparation for US Open title bid

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Rafael Nadal has given an update on his foot injury as he tried to get to full fitness ahead of the US Open in Flushing Meadows. The Spaniard would be fighting the likes of Novak Djokovic for another major title.

Nadal suffered a loss in the last 16 to Lloyd Harris in Washington last week and will put himself to the test again in Toronto.

The tennis legend has been dealing with a recurring foot injury since 2005.

Nadal claimed the problem had resurfaced at the French Open earlier this year which led to him withdrawing from the Olympics.

“I am going day by day,” Nadal said. “The main thing is to try and feel I am improving and feel I am playing better and better, which is the goal at this tournament.

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“I need to have a couple of weeks with less pain to have the confidence again with my movement. I am coming here to try and win, but also to keep feeling positive with my foot.

“I am not at my peak yet, but I have been practicing better than I played in Washington, so I am excited to play here. Hopefully, I will be able to compete well.”

He added: “Last week in Washington, the first round was tough with my foot, but in the second round, I felt a little bit better.

“Even if I lost, that is a positive thing for me.

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“It is about trying to find the routine again on court. Trying to be competitive again.

“I need to have the feeling of playing a few days in a row without any problems.”

Nadal would still go into the US Open as one of the favourites alongside Djokovic.

The Serbian and world number one is looking for a calendar Grand Slam after winning the Australian Open, French Open and Wimbledon.

That has taken him level with Nadal and Roger Federer on 20 major wins in his career.

“Some moments the situation is worse and some moments the situation is better,” added Nadal.

“After Paris my foot was not recovering. I was in a lot of pain for a couple of weeks so I couldn’t train. I stayed around 20 days without touching a racquet, trying to recover.”

The 2021 US Open gets underway on Monday, August 30 with Djokovic the overwhelming favourite for yet another tournament win.

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